Medication mistakes in hospitals and medical facilities are a serious problem, injuring and killing thousands of people every year. In fact over 1.5 million people in the United States are injured each year from medication errors in hospitals, doctor's offices, and medical centers. One such famous example that made the news, was Dennis Quaid's newborn twins who nearly died after being administered 1,000 times the intended dosage of a blood thinner at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.
Another alarming statistic involving medication errors is that an average of at least one medical error occurs every day for every patient who is hospitalized. Although most medical errors do not result in serious injuries, some do, including severe and permanent injuries, and death.
Medication errors happen under the following conditions:
- The wrong drug is prescribed
- The wrong dosage of a drug is administered
- Another dosage of a drug is administered too soon after the previous dose was administered (causing an overdose)
- Failure by medical professionals to check for drug interactions with other drugs
- Failure by medical professionals to screen the patient for drug allergies
- A Doctor's handwriting can't be interpreted by the pharmacist or nurse
- A drug with a similar name is administered instead of the correct drug
- Drugs are placed in the wrong container and mislabeled
- Regulatory agency warnings issued are not up to date
Dr. Bruce Fagel is a medical malpractice attorney and a licensed medical doctor. Dr. Fagel practiced emergency room medicine for over 10 years before becoming an attorney, so he understands first hand as both a doctor and a medical malpractice lawyer how medical mistakes can cause serious injuries to patients. In fact, the Law Offices of Dr. Bruce G. Fagel & Associates has handled many cases involving medication errors that led to severe and permanent injuries and even wrongful death for our clients.
Examples of medication mistakes causing injuries to our clients include patients who were given Heparin, a blood thinner, only to have dangerous brain bleeding, which caused severe injuries. We have also handled cases involving patients being administered too large a dosage of Demerol after surgery, causing an overdose. Because of miscommunication problems with the doctors and medical staff, the amount of Demerol built up in the system of the patients leading to serious injuries and even death. Another example of a case Dr. Fagel handled involved a patient who had a routine appendectomy, but died because the doctors and nurses did not properly communicate with each other about what medications to give the patient for the pain. One challenge with medication errors involves situations where medication errors are not documented. When this happens, our law firm will go through extensive procedures to obtain the facts, including examining medical records and autopsy reports. Dr. Fagel also knows how to spot signs of a medication mistake such as a doctor administering an overdose of a medication. Dr. Fagel can examine the medical records or autopsy report for signs of a corrective medication being given to reverse the large dose of the medication that was accidentally administered.
If you or someone you love was seriously injured as a result of medical malpractice, including a medication mistake, contact the Law Offices of Dr. Bruce G. Fagel & Associates right away for a free consultation at (800) 541-9376.
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